Who's eagerly awaiting the rumoured Sony MF mirrorless?

Started 7 months ago | Discussions thread
SQLGuy
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Re: Why medium format at 50MP doesn't thrill me now
In reply to ProfHankD, 7 months ago

ProfHankD wrote:

First, let me say that I think it is great that Sony is making larger sensors and I would very much encourage them to continue to do that, reaching for really high resolutions.... In the longer term, I'd love to see Sony making sensors that were 8x10" or larger with enough pixels to meet Nyquist sampling for any lens ever made (i.e., wavelength limited spatial resolution).

However, there are problems:

  • The jump from 36MP to 50MP (the current medium format Sony sensor) isn't big enough. 24MP APS-C pixel density gives at least 54MP full frame -- we'll be there real soon if Sony isn't there already.
  • There are tons of existing lenses, and lens designs, for 36x24mm format... and a very limited selection for anything larger. Using the same lenses, a 30.6mm square format could still fit the same image circle, giving 936mm2 instead of the 864mm2 we get in the 3:2 format, but that's not much difference. Similarly, a 36mm square sensor would allow cropping to any of 30.6mm square, 3:2, or 2:3 using the full image circle without the need to rotate the camera, which could be nice, but 36x36mm isn't really medium format.
  • Sensor size and related problems (e.g., cost, power, I/O bandwidth).
  • Need for yet another new lens mount.

In sum, I think true medium format at around 50MP is a niche market worthy of Sony's interest, but not destined to become mainstream. That will change, but it will take things like much higher resolution and new optics... in other words, it will take time.

Niche, sure, but I think Sony's intent here would be to primarily target the market they accidentally targeted with the NEX series: people with all those nice medium format lenses that are collecting dust. Sure, they'll be happy to sell some to people looking for a new investment in MF IQ on a (relative) budget, but I think they'll offer this camera with a short-ish native registration so that all those Mamiya, Fuji, Pentax, Exakta, and, of course, Hasselblad, lenses will be useful again.

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